Facial Steamer Benefits & Why Your Skin Needs One
You've heard of facials, but what about your own personal face steamer? Yep, turns out you can reap the benefits of a professional beauty treatment without the hefty price tag or even having to leave your home. Here, we'll break down everything you need to know about at-home facial steamers, including what they are, how and when to use one, and what health benefits they promise to deliver.
What are facial steamers?
Facial steamers are, quite literally, machines that steam your face. They're sort of like mini humidifiers! Facial steamers typically have a padded silicone funnel to fit the shape of your face, as well as a water reservoir that, when switched on, gets heated to produce steam. Your face goes either in or near the funnel to absorb the steam. The main purpose, of course, is to deeply clean your skin, but these machines have plenty of other benefits, too.
What are facial steamer benefits?
Facial steamers penetrate below the surface of your skin to draw out buildup that can't be removed by regular, surface cleansers. The heat softens skin to remove impurities, dirt, and bacteria without the use of any harsh chemicals.
As the temperature rises, your body produces more perspiration. This helps the blood vessels in your skin dilate, which increases blood flow. As a result, this blood delivers oxygen and nutrients to the skin to improve your complexion.
The heat and steam help open pores to get rid of any blockage caused by dirt, makeup, bacteria, etc. This, in turn, allows beauty products like creams and serums to more easily and effectively penetrate your skin.
Toxins below your skin's surface can often be the root of imbalances that cause breakouts. When you sweat, your body releases these toxins. The more heat applied, the faster toxins are removed through your pores.
Steam aids in improving the permeability of your skin, which is crucial for hydration. Just remember to drink a couple glasses of water after each steaming session to revive your body and skin.
How to Use a Face Steamer
Although there are different types of machines, most devices have the same general operation. Here's how to use a face steamer:
- Prep your skin. Face steamers work best with a clean face. Remove any makeup or dirt with your regular cleanser. Exfoliate with a gentle face scrub to remove any dead skin cells.
- Choose your herbs (optional). Though steam alone is good for your skin, adding natural herbs may provide additional benefits. Most herbs can already be found in your cabinet: think lavender, thyme, basil, rosemary, eucalyptus, chamomile, peppermint, etc.
- Fill 'er up. Most machines have a chamber underneath the funnel. Fill this with approximately two cups of warm water and press start. Be sure to read your instruction manual for recommendations specific to your model.
- Steam away. Once your machine starts producing steam, put your face in the designated cone. Stay about 5 to 10 inches away from the steam to avoid swelling or burning. Start with a two-minute session to see how your skin reacts. After that, you can up the time based on your preference. Generally speaking, aim for about 5–8 minutes of steam time a week.
- Finish strong. After your session, pat your face dry with a clean towel to remove any loose dirt or sweat. Follow up with a mask or your favorite moisturizer for ultimate hydration.